Do Small Business,Organizations and Government Understand Social Media?

When the Internet was only between Colleges and Universities, I was on line back then in 1989 and have had a chance to see a lot of changes since it’s beginning.  One thing hasn’t changed, many small Business, Originations, and local Government in Small Town America doesn’t seem to understand how to use the Internet effectively for effective communication or as a marketing tool…

The University of Maryland’s Smith School of Business looked at the relationship between social media and small businesses and found that the technology adoption rates in the U.S. have doubled in the past year from 12% to 24%.  That’s a good percent, but that means 76% aren’t… The data comes from the university’s third installment to its Small Business Success Index report and is based on a December 2009 telephone survey of 500 small business owners. Adoption rate calculations are compared against a baseline report conducted in December 2008. The study concludes that nearly one in five small business owners are integrating social media into their business processes — Facebook and LinkedIn were the most popular sites. 45% of surveyed respondents even believe their social media initiatives will pay off financially in 12 months or less.

The University looked at how many where using it, but they failed to look a bit deeper…  What number of those 24% of 500 businesses where really set up and using it correctly?

So many Business and Organizations are setting up personal pages instead of Business/Organization pages or what is called “Fan Pages”, as FaceBook has a few different formats for different uses…

I look online and see many small business websites that have a Facebook follow link and many have a FaceBook accounts…  But when I click through it, I find they have a personal account set up for their Business or Organization instead of a Business Account…  Even in larger towns and cities, I find this problem…  Even though they do have some Social Media formats set up, many are set up incorrectly or not at all…

With the opt-in of followers of FaceBook, it can allow a business or small town Government or tourist department to have their news, service or events highlighted to those who follow them online and even those that use smart phones…

Wouldn’t you if you had a smartphone want to find out that the local restaurant is having a lunch special, or local school where your kids are attending want to find out that they are playing a football game, arts show or concert?  Or what of local Government, wouldn’t it be nice to not have to look through the local newspaper to find out there is a meeting on gas drilling or property tax hike meeting?  If only 24% of Small business are implementing Social Media into their online presents, how much news and information isn’t being shared that your local community would be interested in?

The tools are there; it is just a massive lack of understanding of what kind, how or when to use them…  Which of the different tools to use and how to set them up correctly for the most effective ability of basic communications and marketing…  Like to try to use a hand saw to drive a spike nail, Business and Originations need to learn how to use the different Social Media tools to drive home their communications and marketing services correctly for the best results…

If you’re a Small Business Owner, do some reading and research first…  Since FaceBook is one of the most used in the world, with over 500 million users, I recommend this Social Media service as being the first step into using Social Media…  Even if you don’t have a website, setting up a FaceBook account for Business, Organizations and Local Governments is the place to start…

To do this, I would also recommend hiring someone who TRULY understands and uses Social Media…  First ask the person your hiring what they know of FaceBook, if they truly understand the different types of accounts FaceBook offers…  Then look up their Twitter account- do they have good numbers of followers, do they engage those they follow and who follow them, do they just post links or highlight about information about themselves like they are going to go get coffee?  Twitter allows one to follow 2000 people before they start restricting a Follow ratio, I believe if they don’t have at least 2000 followers, it is my view they really don’t have much experience in truly using Twitter as a social networking…  In their FaceBook account, do they highlight news and articles of Blogs in relating to Social Media; do they engage in conversations with people that follow them? These are some good questions to ask and information to look into…

There are a lot of people who might say they are Experts or even try to teach Social Media, but are they just grabbing onto the latest Buzzword of Social Media to get your money?  Ask yourself if they truly have experience in marketing and using this type of marketing tool?  Do they have a Blog, do they have a website, do they have accounts in Twitter and FaceBook. Have they done Marketing online should be some of questions you should ask and look up…

Social Media is truly a way of Marketing, Communications, Advertising and allowing you to engage with your clients, possible clients and community…  Just because someone knows how to work on computers, doesn’t mean they understand or use Social Media correctly…  Social Media is more about Marketing and Communications then it truly is about Technology…

With a personal account with Facebook you can highlight your selling your record collection or maybe having a garage or lawn sale, even selling your car, but you can’t do business via a personal account, you can openly sell products and services through a Business account… The difference is Personal accounts in FaceBook limit you to only 5000 followers…  The Fan Page account allows you to not only sell things, but can give information about how many people look at your page…  FaceBook also has the right to cancel your personal account if they feel you are using it for Business or Organization…

Doing some research and reading your self can be time consuming, but a worthy venture…  If you don’t have a website up, and haven’t started using Social Media, try FaceBook…

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8 Responses

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bill James, Jeff Parsons. Jeff Parsons said: Do Small Business,Organizations and Government Understand Social … http://bit.ly/buUzV5 […]

  2. […] View original post here: Do Small Business,Organizations and Government Understand Social … […]

  3. gonna send this to my mom

    • Thank you for enjoying this article to the point of wanting to share it with your mother…

  4. hope and change

  5. thanks

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